World of Hyatt Giving Retroactive Elite Credit for 2017 Award Stays

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As you have probably already seen, beginning in 2018, the World of Hyatt program (finally) began counting award stays towards qualifying for elite status. This will obviously really help those of us who sprinkle in a fair amount of award stays along with paid Hyatt visits throughout the year.


They didn’t say this at the time, but apparently, they had another trick (or actually, treat) up their sleeves. Earlier this week, many World of Hyatt members, such as my friend Pizza in Motion, began getting email notifications that their 2017 Hyatt award stays were counting retroactively towards 2017 Hyatt elite status. This helped some folks bump up to top-tier Globalist, some to Explorist or Discoverist status, and it helped some who had already secured Globalist status achieve milestones that are unlocked at 70, 80, 90, and 100-night thresholds.

Free full breakfast for Globalist members

While I’m sure some Hyatt fans will be frustrated by this retroactive crediting as they would have done some things differently in 2017 if they knew this would happen, I still think it is pretty cool that some travelers will benefit and achieve more perks or a higher status level than they expected!

I reached out to Hyatt just to confirm what was happening, and here was their response:

As for the recent targeted member communications re: retro awards – as you know, we recently announced that free night awards count toward tier status in 2018. Since our members have been anxiously awaiting this benefit, we’re excited to share that member activity in 2017 was evaluated to see if it would have adjusted elite status or receipt of night threshold rewards. To this end, earlier this week members were notified if their 2017 award night activity resulted in maintaining elite status another year or upgrading to Discoverist, Explorist or Globalist through February 2019. Members were also notified if award night activity resulted in rewarding them with the choice of a suite upgrade award or 10,000 Bonus Points for reaching 70, 80, 90 or 100-night thresholds.

This surprise crediting from 2017, the news that award stays count for 2018 and beyond, and the extension of the Category 1-4 and 1-7 awards from 120 days to 180 days really shows me that World of Hyatt is course correcting a bit and heading in a good direction.

Use your Hyatt Category 1-4 award at the Hyatt Olive 8 in Seattle

Did anyone here benefit from this retroactive World of Hyatt surprise?

Head here to learn more about available credit cards and their bonuses.


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  1. If with award nights brought you above the 30-night threshold to get a free 1-4 cert and above the 5-brand to get a free 1-4 cert, would we be notified? Twitter Hyatt says yes but I haven’t gotten anything yet.

    • Mark, they have four lounge access passes at their mid-tier status, but I agree that could be much more valuable if it could be used as a breakfast benefit if there is not a lounge at a given property. Even if it was just 4x a year, as the lounge pass operates, I think that could go a long way.

      • I had the same question and was able to get this response from the Hyatt Twitter team

        “Stays in 2017 will not affect the Brand Exploroer but going forward free night award stays will count towards that promotion.”

        • Thanks for that! That would have been my guess, but I’ll let you know if they Hyatt corporate team gives a different answer.

          • Post coming soon but it will count 2018 and forward. It won’t count retroactive to 2017 for the purposes of the brand explorer awards.

  2. I don’t understand who is qualified to get the kind of mail. Some of my friends got, but mostly none. Hyatt should clarify it. Because I think if the standard is not clearly, it is unfair to other Globalist.

  3. I wound’n’t exactly classify this as “cool”. It’s more a glaring indication of Hyatt reacteivly realizing they pissed a lot of people off with WOH and engagement within the program/number of elites in the ranks is far below expectations.

    I agree it’s going to further alienate a subset of people that would have played 2017 diffently. It just makes me wander though when Hyatt is going to wake up and start acting proactively instead of reactively.

  4. I, for one, could have requalified as top tier with some effort if this had been announced. I threw multiple multiple-day stays to other chains, since there was no possible way I’d get to 55 paid Hyatt nights. So my total was maybe 12 nights at Hyatt, 40at SPG (where I’m lifetime Plat), 6 at Marriott, and I vacationed in November and December with 10 nights at Conrad, 10 more at Park Hyatt for free, and a few nights at Langham and I-C plus a couple independents. Could have made the 55nights, but now that would be 60. Again, much as I love Hyatts, 60 is too many even with free stays counting.

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